Jesus used a variety of methods when healing people, employing whatever resource was at hand. In John chapter nine, Jesus spat on a bit of dirt, mixed it into mud, and anointed the blind man’s eyes with it. I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t easily let some stranger rub mud in my eyes, especially if he made it from his own spittle. Obviously, even to a blind man, Jesus was pretty special. Maybe it was his tone of voice, or his spirit was that easily discerned, but it was not his appearance or his warm smile.
This story illustrates the two kinds of blindness: First, physical blindness was certainly a handicap in Jesus’ time, as they hadn’t developed the adaptive technologies we have today.
The most profound blindness, though, is spiritual blindness, and all human beings are born with it. Visually blind people know they are missing a sense that most others possess, because sighted people talk and act based on what they see. Spiritually blind people, however, seldom receive that kind of verbal cues from Christ-followers. For them to realize their blindness, they need to “see,” by our talk, but mostly by our actions, the spiritual sight that believers take for granted. That includes positive, redemptive speech, and loving actions—even toward those who are hard to love.
Obedience Is Mandatory
One key element in this story is what the blind man did after the ocular mud bath. Though he couldn’t yet see, he obeyed Jesus’ command to go wash in the pool of Siloam, and he came back seeing. Many believers fail to understand the conditional nature of God’s promises; for every promise, there is an “if,” either stated or implied, that becomes our personal responsibility.
Another key element here is, when Jesus finally introduced himself to the man he’d healed, that newly sighted man bowed down to worship him. Significantly, when the man worshiped him, Jesus didn’t tell him to stop. Rather, he accepted the man’s worship, as a clear statement of his divine identity. Jesus, Son of God and Son of Man, was the only man who ever lived that could rightly accept human worship. In fact, human worship is due him.
We Christ-followers were healed of our spiritual blindness, but do we act like it? Do we talk like it? And do we worship our Savior and Healer every minute of our lives by our actions and words?